Following numerous reports, rumors and speculations on the potential setup of a US-based manufacturing facility by Apple’s supplier Foxconn and Sharp, the latest report from Reuters states that Sharp in now “taking the lead” on a $7 billion manufacturing facility in the US. The plan was initially outlined by Foxconn, Sharp’s parent company.The facility will reportedly break ground sometime in the first half of 2017.
The timing of this news is an interesting thing to note. The new coincides with JapanesePrime ministers Shinzo Abe’s upcoming meeting with US President Donald Trump. The US president played the key role for establishing a US-based iPhone manufacturing facility. Trump, in a phone call to Apple’ CEO Tim Cook, had said that it will be a “real achievement” for his Presidency to get Apple shift its manufacturing muscles to into the States.
A decision by Foxconn to give Sharp the lead would come as Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe prepares to travel to the United States to meet U.S. President Donald Trump, who in his inauguration speech vowed to put “America first”.
In a package Tokyo hopes will please Trump, Abe will unveil investments to create as many as 700,000 U.S. jobs, people familiar with the matter told Reuters earlier.
Abe will visit Trump at his private Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida over the weekend, where the two leaders will play golf, following a meeting on Friday in Washington.
Sharp was previously reported to intend to open a US-based LCD construction plant for TV sets and home appliances. Foxconn’s rumored manufacturing facility is a proposed $7 billion joint investment with the Cupertino company, which would potentially lead to a display manufacturing plant in the US. Sharp now seems to be leading the project for Foxconn and Apple.
According to Sharp’s spokesperson, the company has not made any official decision to set up a manufacturing plant if the US. According to people familiar with the matter, Japan’s president is set to present a plan that will create 700,000 through its US-based operations and include a variety of manufacturing facilities.